It’s more than a good bet that Las Vegas played itself a heavy hand with all the upscale product they developed. And now that the recession is “sitting in,” the winnings just might go to those clients who want to take advantage of all the values and bargains a tight economy has left on the table.
For example, last year Mandalay Bay ran an Escapist package starting at $679 for a 2-night package with $150 of amenity and dining credits, in-room movies and access to Moorea Beach Club. A similar package this fall that runs until Jan. 29, the Exotic Escape package, starts at $89 per night and brings a pile of privileges starting with suite upgrades, $50 in resort credits, a fly-back-free voucher (worth $350), 2-for-1 admission to shows and House of Blues meals, and coupons for retail savings at Mandalay Place.
Want more comparisons? An October 2007 Wynn story right here in Recommend cited the property’s advertised room rate range at $300 to $750. Those rates are now more in the range of $200 to $500 per night with a $199 rate as fairly common occurrence.
But Las Vegas is not a destination that gets up from the table after one losing hand and it’s certainly not a destination accustomed to waiting for change. As recently as last March when early signs of a recession were manifesting in decreasing room occupancies and convention bookings, the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority (LVCVA) kicked in a campaign called Vegas Right Now and the results continue to rumble down the Strip in the form of great room rates, entertainment treats and dining promotions that get noticed.
“While Las Vegas is certainly not immune to the effects of a slowing economy, we have faced difficult economic times in the past, and we have found a way to sustain the industry and recover quickly,” says Art Jimenez, director of leisure marketing, LVCVA. “The resort industry is still investing in the development of the destination, but they are doing so in a fiscally responsible manner during these economic circumstances. Year-to-date, our average daily room rate hovers around $124. This is the perfect time to visit Las Vegas to get the most value for your dollar,” Jimenez adds.
In fact, Vegas has not been this affordable since the days of the free chuckwagon buffets that were rolled into the casinos and the plainly styled guestrooms that served simply as beds for gamblers. For clients who have not seen Vegas lately, this may be their moment, says Jimenez. And for Vegas aficionados, the city is a veritable candyland of fortune, both on the tables and off.
Cha-Ching The resorts throughout the Las Vegas system of MGM Mirage were quick to respond to the spinning economy and have taken the lead in offering irresistible rates and packages. For instance, rooms at Bellagio can be booked for rates starting at $199 per night. Rooms at Mandalay Bay can be booked for $110 per night. Rooms at The Mirage start at $109 per night. The Mirage, incidentally, recently underwent a top-to-bottom interior upgrade and offers a gleaming new room style. Rooms at MGM Grand start at $90 per night. Rooms at TI can be reserved for as little as $89 per night.
Additionally, rooms at Monte Carlo are priced from $80 per night as are rooms at New York-New York and Luxor. Luxor, too, has received a hefty redo and has morphed from Tut Hut to Scene City with the entry of such buzz-makers as LAX Nightclub, Noir Bar, CatHouse, Company Bistro and Criss Angel’s “Believe” with Cirque du Soleil.
Another best bet can be found at Excalibur where rooms start at $61 per night. The resort recently completed a radical room and pool redo that took Arthur off the thrown and welcomed in a modern and contemporary new spirit.
And for those who really want to save their wallets for the wheels of fortune and winnings, rooms at Circus Circus—right at the center of the Strip—can be had for as little as $37 per night, including those free circus performances that occur hourly around the casino Big Top.
Finally, those clients interested in checking out the luxurious Wynn can score a resort room for $199 per night or spring for a 754-sq.-ft. resort suite at the new Encore for $299.